3D aerosol-cloud interaction is examined by analyzing two images containing cumulus clouds in biomass burning regions in Brazil. The research consists of two parts. The first part focuses on identifying 3D clo ud impacts on the reflectance of pixel selected for the MODIS aerosol retrieval based purely on observations. The second part of the resea rch combines the observations with radiative transfer computations to identify key parameters in 3D aerosol-cloud interaction. We found that 3D cloud-induced enhancement depends on optical properties of nearb y clouds as well as wavelength. The enhancement is too large to be ig nored. Associated biased error in 1D aerosol optical thickness retrie val ranges from 50% to 140% depending on wavelength and optical prope rties of nearby clouds as well as aerosol optical thickness. We caution the community to be prudent when applying 1D approximations in comp uting solar radiation in dear regions adjacent to clouds or when usin g traditional retrieved aerosol optical thickness in aerosol indirect effect research.